© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Gallery Text

In the Zhou dynasty the number of jades in burial sites increased significantly, as multiple plaques and beads were sewn or strung together and draped over the face and body of the deceased. Jades in the forms of figures and animals became increasingly realistic, and surface patterns became more complex and highly decorative.

Identification and Creation
Object Number
1943.50.469.A
Title
Jade Tiger (one of a pair)
Classification
Ritual Implements
Work Type
ornament
Date
3rd century BCE
Places
Creation Place: East Asia, China
Period
Warring States to Western Han period
Culture
Chinese
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/204745
Location
Level 1, Room 1740, Early Chinese Art, Arts of Ancient China from the Neolithic to the Bronze Age
View this object's location on our interactive map
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Dark brown and beige mottled nephrite
Dimensions
L. 19.1 x H. 8.8 x Thickness 0.5 cm (7 1/2 x 3 7/16 x 3/16 in.)
Weight 170 g
Provenance
Grenville L. Winthrop, New York (by 1943), bequest; to Fogg Art Museum, 1943.
Published Text
Catalogue
Ancient Chinese Jades from the Grenville L. Winthrop Collection in the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University
Authors
Max Loehr and Louisa G. Fitzgerald Huber
Publisher
Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, MA, 1975)

Catalogue entry no. 438a by Max Loehr:

438 Pair of Tiger Slabs
Highly polished jade, the color of tortoise-shell. The uncouth bulk of the heads and bodies contrasts curiously with the highly ornate and formalistic execution. The faces, the surfaces of which are left plain, contrast with the diverse texture of the bodies, which are covered with plastic curls; the shoulders and hind-quarters, filled with incised, interlocked T -hooks; and the tails, marked by median lines and concentric curves. Striated ropes border the mouths and frame the jaws. The outline of the lower jaws exhibits the axe-shape observed before (e.g. Nos. 427 and 432), a shape that is very pronounced here on account of the inward-curved fangs. Jaws, forelegs, and hindlegs form a continuous chain of curlicues, set off from the bodies by openwork. The tails are similarly separated from the haunches by a narrow crescent-shaped slot. Each slab perforated at top center. Late Eastern Chou.

Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Bequest of Grenville L. Winthrop
Accession Year
1943
Object Number
1943.50.469.A
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
THIS WORK MAY NOT BE LENT BY THE TERMS OF ITS ACQUISITION TO THE HARVARD ART MUSEUMS.
The Harvard Art Museums encourage the use of images found on this website for personal, noncommercial use, including educational and scholarly purposes. To request a higher resolution file of this image, please submit an online request.
Publication History

Takayasu Higuchi, ed., Chugoku bijutsu, dai 4-kan (Chinese Art in Western Collections vol. 4: Bronze and Jade), Kodansha (Tokyo, Japan, 1973), pl. 103 a

Max Loehr and Louisa G. Fitzgerald Huber, Ancient Chinese Jades from the Grenville L. Winthrop Collection in the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, MA, 1975), cat. no. 438a, p. 301

James Cuno, Alvin L. Clark, Jr., Ivan Gaskell, and William W. Robinson, Harvard's Art Museums: 100 Years of Collecting, ed. James Cuno, Harvard University Art Museums and Harry N. Abrams, Inc. (Cambridge, MA, 1996), pp. 54-55

Harvard University Art Museums, Masterpieces of world art : Fogg Art Museum, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Busch-Reisinger Museum, 1997

Exhibition History

Re-View: S228-230 Arts of Asia, Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 05/31/2008 - 06/01/2013

32Q: 1740 Early China I, Harvard Art Museums, 11/16/2014 - 01/01/2050

Subjects and Contexts

Google Art Project

Collection Highlights

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu